The ecoartspace blog will feature artist profiles and reviews of exhibitions, as well as writings on ecological systems. We are interested in presenting work that artists are making in collaboration with scientists, and poetics including spoken word, opera, and performative work. Painting, sculpture, ceramics, photography, drawing, and printmaking are all welcome media. Speculative architecture and public art are also encourage. Submissions for posts can be sent to We look forward to hearing from you!

You can access the previous ecoartspace blog HERE (2008-2019)

ecoartspace, LLC

Mailing address: PO Box 5211 Santa Fe, New Mexico 87502
  • Monday, October 17, 2022 7:43 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    October 17, 2022

    This week we recognize   Pam Longobardi, and her twenty plus year practice focused on plastic pollution.

    "I engage citizens in active processes of cleaning ascare:  action as antidote to experience the transformative connective shift that occurs. Plastic is the geologic marker of the Anthropocene, Capitalocene, or most poignantly, Eremocene, the ‘Age of Loneliness’(E.O.Wilson). Plastic production, dissemination and zombie afterlife contributes to Earth’s present 6th Mass Extinction. In addition to gallery/museum installations, I do site-work, involving forms of distance messaging such as mirror communication, Semaphore, and S.O.S. messages shot by drone, as performative pieces, projecting messages of attention. This, along with my studio-based painting practice involving phenomenology and chemistry, makes up the whole of my work."    click images for more info

    "Plastic objects are the cultural archeology of our time. These objects I see as a portrait of global late-capitalist consumer society, mirroring our desires, wishes, hubris and ingenuity.  These are objects with unintended consequences that become transformed as they leave the quotidian world and collide with nature to be transformed, transported and regurgitated out of the shifting oceans. The ocean is communicating with us through the materials of our own making. The plastic elements initially seem attractive and innocuous, like toys, some with an eerie familiarity and some totally alien. At first, the plastic seems innocent and fun, but it is not. It is dangerous. We are remaking the world in plastic."

    "In keeping with the movement of drift of these material artifacts, I prefer using them in a transitiveform as installation. All of the work can be dismantled, reconfigured but nearly impossibly recycled. The objects are presented as specimens on steel pins or wired together to form larger structures. I am interested in the collision between nature and global consumer culture. Ocean plastic is a material that can unleash unpredictable dynamics. As a product of culture that exhibits visibly the attempts of nature to reabsorb and regurgitate this invader, ocean plastic has profound stories to tell."

    In 2013, Longobardi created a site-specific installation for a special project of the Venice cultural association Ministero di Beni Culturali (MiBAC), and the Ministry of Culture of Rome, for the 55th Venice Biennale on the Island of San Francesco del Deserto in the Venetian Lagoon; a work made from plastic water bottles, crystals and a mirrored satellite dish that signaled an apology to St. Francis across the lagoon to the island of Burano (below).

    Pam Longobardi  lives and works in Atlanta as Regents’ Professor and Distinguished Professor of Art at Georgia State University. Her Drifters Project, which began in 2006 after encountering mountainous piles of plastic on remote Hawaiian beaches, is ongoing,following the world ocean currents. With the Drifters Project, she collects, documents and transforms oceanic plastic into installations, public art and photography. The work provides a visual statement about the engine of global consumption, the vast amounts of plastic objects’ impact on the world’s most remote places and its’ creatures, framed within a conversation about globalism and conservation. She has exhibited across the US and in Greece, Monaco, Germany, Finland, Slovakia, China, Japan, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Costa Rica and Poland. Longobardi participated in the 2013 GYRE expedition to remote coastal areas of Alaska and created project-specific large-scale works for exhibition at the Anchorage Museum February 2014 that traveled nationwide to five US museums. She was featured in a National Geographic film on the GYRE expedition and her Drifters Project was featured in National Geographic magazine. Longbardi is Oceanic Society’s Artist-In-Nature.

    Featured Images (top to bottom): ©Pam Longobardi, Drifters Objects; ForensicLab, Ocean Gleaning, solo exhibition at Baker Museum, Florida, 2022; Baker Museum, back room, Laocoon Threnodfy Bounty Pilfered, 2022; Reflecting Web of the Anthropocene (An Apology to Saint Francis), 2013, Venice, Italy; below, portrait of the artist.

  • Tuesday, October 11, 2022 9:24 PM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    October 10, 2022

    This week we recognize    Debra Swack, and her media and sound work focused on the interstice of humans and non-humans.

    Swack’s work is a catalyst for change, innovation, and collaboration in helping to solve world problems. For example: ‘Bloom’ addresses plant consciousness; ‘Cloud Mapping Project’ addresses climate change, surveillance, artificial intelligence, machine learning and creativity (can machines create?); and ‘Animal Patterning Project’ addresses the history of genetically manipulating animals, environmental displacement through urbanization, and the rise of infectious diseases due to deforestation such as COVID. click on images for more information

    Bloom (above) utilizes the research of evolutionary biology to present digital simulations of the sounds that plants communicate bio-acoustically through vibrations. The work was featured in the New York Academy of Science's fall 2017 magazine about scientific innovations for the next 100 years. It was also presented in Sound, Images and Data for Leonardo Electronic Almanac (MIT Press) at NYU, and for EvoS (Evolutionary Studies at SUNY Binghamton).

    Cloud Mapping Project (below) addresses surveillance, artificial intelligence, machine learning and creativity (can machines create?). The Project was presented at the Pera Museum in Istanbul, the American Academy of Rome (where she was a visiting artist along with William Kentridge, Joan Tower, and Vincent Katz), and Banff Centre in Canada. At Banff, the work was the subject of a Fulbright eye-tracking workshop and an exhibition of related works under a Leighton Colony Residency. In 2019, Cloud Mapping Project was the subject of an interview by science journalist Clarissa Wright for NatureVolve.

    Animal Patterning Project (below), is an ephemeral dance performance about our complex relationship with other-animals and simulates their return by projecting their likeness onto the urban environment they once inhabited. It includes the historical practice of taxidermy, our unique ability to genetically manipulate their bodies and skins for our own purposes, and the dilemma of displaced indigenous other-animals that urban development creates. The project was selected in 2021 for the online presentation and book Becoming Feral. It is a 2021 recipient of a City Arts grant from the NYC Dept of Cultural Affairs and New York Foundation of the Arts.

    Debra Swack             is a digital and sound artist who creates transformative participatory experiences about the most critical issues of our time. She received Fulbright grants from Banff Centre (2015) and Tel Aviv University (2018). Her writings have been published by MIT, and she was included in Art and Innovation at Xerox Parc (MIT, 1999). In 2019, she was selected by the New York Academy of Science, Pratt Institute and Guerrilla Science, to participate in Conveying Science Through Art, who believe that public engagement in science is critical to a well-functioning society. Called ‘an important work,’ by Margaret Morton (Ford Foundation), The mixed reality Monument Project, about heroes and the democratization of memorialization, was shortlisted by Creative Time/NEW INC at the New Museum in 2019 for an installation in Central Park. The project was a 2020 recipient of a Mellon Foundation grant and a 2018 Creative Engagement grant from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, and NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, in collaboration with Microsoft, the Siddhartha School, and the Rubin Foundation.

    Featured Images (top to bottom): ©Debra Swack, Birdsongs, Sonic Fragments Sound art Festival, Princeton University, 2008; Bloom, 2017, featured at New York Academy of Sciences; Cloud Mapping, 2014, video edition of 10, featured in Fragile Rainbow at Williamsburg Art & Historical Center, May 2022; Animal Patterning, 2015, commissioned by Pratt Institute & the West Harlem Art Fund; below, portrait of the artist.

  • Wednesday, October 05, 2022 11:04 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)

    Rudiments, oil on panel, 18 x 24 inches, and sculpture: clay, gouache, wire stand

    Adoration, Observation and Visual Ecology: Ashley Eliza Williams Wishes to Speak with the Growth in the Forest

    Interview by: Olivia Ann Carye Hallstein

    Ashley Eliza Williams is practicing through careful study, observation, and sentience, the ability to communicate with the building blocks of the natural world. She is at one with the lichens, mosses, lithophytes, and most solid rocks of the forest. Her visions are filled with future ecologies based on the tales and dreams of both the oldest forebearers and the most adaptable around us. I had the pleasure of asking her questions to her practice…

    Resonant, oil on panel, 40 x 30 inches

    Dear Ashley, in your process of seeking sentience in the natural world, what have you found so far and what has most surprised you?  

    Although a rock in the forest isn’t “alive” by any scientific metric, it hosts an ecosystem of beings with relational and sensory capacities: lichens, mosses, insects, small mammals, bacteria, algae, and other lithophytes. These beings sense the world and interact with each other in wildly different ways. In a certain sense, when you contemplate a rock, you are in dialogue with an entire community of sentient beings. This feels magical and incredible to me, but it is very real.  

    Index Fossil, oil on panel, 20 x 20 inches, and sculpture: wire stand, gouache

    I believe you, perhaps we are not listening closely enough. In the visual depictions of your findings, you often choose a chart format for your compositions. What has led you to explore this representational form and what role does color choice have in what you are representing?  

    I’ve always loved field notebooks and scientific charts. I think they are beautiful and I’m fascinated by the kinds of information scientists have chosen to record throughout the ages.  Why is one piece of information more important than another? What do these choices say about an individual scientist, the cultures that we are a part of, and our anthropocentric worldviews? Being an artist gives me an excuse to play with and think about these questions.  

    Since 2014, I’ve been using color charts to try to abstract or distill experiences in nature and my attempts at interspecies communication. My latest project is an attempt to communicate with a lichen. I’ve been visiting the same patch of lichen every day. Each day, I create a color strip that reflects my experience with the lichen. I’ve visited the lichen in the evening, in the morning, in the middle of the night, when I’m feeling hopeful, and when I’m depressed. Each time I interact, I mix a very specific color to describe that interaction. The colors are a record of my many (and mostly failed) communication attempts.  

    Convergence Studies 2, oil on canvas, 20 x 20 inches

    Beyond your process, how much of your work is scientific explorations, spiritual findings, and fantasy? 

    It’s a mix of real and imagined. My partner is a scientist, and my projects often involve working closely with scientists in the field. But I also love imagining potential future beings and ecologies. I believe that there is a link between the human imagination and biodiversity. Artists who care about ecology need to be wild dreamers and we need wild landscapes to be able to dream. I think it’s important to imagine what a healthier future ecology might look like. What animals, plants, and ecosystems will exist in the future if we don’t drive everything to extinction? Most of the images I paint and sculpt are imaginary or highly abstracted. But they are built on a foundation of obsessive observation, research, a love of wild places, and my deep respect for and curiosity about all living beings, especially those that are quiet and easily overlooked.  

    Nucleus, oil on panel, 18 x 24 inches, and sculpture: clay, wire stand, cut paper, gouache, coral

    Thank you, Ashley. And good luck with your incredible interspecies goals. We have a lot to learn from this earth. 

  • Monday, October 03, 2022 10:41 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    October 3, 2022

    This week we recognize Eliza Evans  Eliza Evans, and her work focused on climate and resource extraction.

    Evans' current and ongoing project, All the Way to Hell (above), which began in 2020,is an activist art model for disrupting fossil fuel development on private land in the U.S.The monumental work, currently with over 7,000 participants, converts hundreds of individual gestures into a new form of environmental resistance at the intersection of property law, fossil fuel business practice, and bureaucracy. The project transfers rights from single mineral properties to hundreds of people to impeded fossil fuel development. Evans will attempt to file the first deeds in Oklahoma this month. (click images for more information)

    Time Machine (2019-ongoing, above) is a durational and interactive work in which the artist spent 8-hours inside a mass-produced greenhouse. The outside and inside temperature difference served as a kind of climate change scenario generator. As the temperature rose during the day it was amplified inside the greenhouse with attendant stress on her body. The following day the artist invited visitors inside the Time Machine to experience a possible future.

    The Compact (above) is three seven-foot tall cast concrete figures that enlist Cycladic, Greek, and 3D-scanned female forms to examine the compression of individual agency over millennia and our more contemporary assent to the myriad ways we are surveilled, measured, and archived. The figure is made from clearly defined parts loosely held by two threaded rods and patches of mortar. The rebar matrixes that reinforce the concrete reference the inscription of gridded systems on our bodies and our actions.

    Pause (2018, above) is three 10-foot squares plots surrounded by an 8 to 9-foot tall fence made of t-posts and tinted monofilament. The installation is an unambiguous artwork inscribed in the forest that by its shape and materials alludes to science, gardening, cultivation, and management. There is no gate or passageway into the plots. The viewer is excluded from the plot’s interior but for a 12-18-inch gap between the forest floor and the bottom of the fencing. The viewer is left to consider what is protected and why. Inside the plots, the forest will be for the most part unmolested by both deer and humans for the duration of the work.

    Below is a well core sample and quitclaim mineral deed representing Evan's All the Way to Hell project in a gallery setting.

    Eliza Evans  experiments with sculpture, print, video, and digital media to identify disconnections and absurdities in social, economic, and ecological systems. Her work has been exhibited at the Bronx Museum (2021), Missoula Art Museum (2021), Austin Peay State University, Clarksville TN (2021), Thomas Erben Gallery, New York, NY (2020), Alexey von Schlippe Gallery, University of Connecticut (2020), Chautauqua Institution, Chautauqua, NY (2019), Edward Hopper House Museum, Nyack, NY (2019), and BRIC, Brooklyn (2017), and has appeared in the New York Times, Art in America, Hyperallergic, The Brooklyn Rail, and Dissent Magazine. A law review article on her work is forthcoming in the Cardozo Arts and Entertainment Law Journal. Residencies include the LMCC Art Center (2022), the Art Law Program (2021), National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis, UC Santa Barbara (2020), and Bronx Museum AIM. She is currently a member of NEW INC, the New Museum’s cultural incubator. Evans was born in a Rust Belt steel town and raised in rural Appalachia. She currently splits her time between Tennessee and New York.

    Featured Images (top to bottom): ©Eliza Evans, All the Way to Hell, 2020-ongoing; Time Machine, 2019-ongoing; The Compact, 2019, concrete, steel; Pause, 2018, posts, monofilament; All the Way to Hell, 2020-ongoing; below is portrait of the artist.

  • Saturday, October 01, 2022 9:21 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)

    The ecoartspace October 2022 e-Newsletter for non-members is here

  • Monday, September 26, 2022 9:45 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    September 26, 2022

    This week we recognize   Toby Zallman Toby Zallman, and her work focused on plastic pollution.

    Trained as a painter in the 1970s, Zallman transitioned to sculpture in the 1990s, and began to examine the role of technology in our lives in 2004. She stated in an interview, “It was a period where I transitioned from looking inward to becoming conscious of what was happening outside of me, in the landscape.” She learned about the burning of e-waste in China and the resulting air pollution, and subsequently became concerned about safe drinking water. By 2014, the artist was shocked and captivated by the relentless proliferation and neglect of plastic pollution and decided to make her materials the message.

    Zallman's Molluscs (above), one of eighteen total, is made from plastic drinking cups that the artist had in her studio for years and decided to use, together forming the series Small Works Group. The sealife simulation is also a combination of stones and cloth, all upcycled and assembled as a memorial portrait.

    The artists has also made sculpture using plastic bags wrapped around wire in the shape of ocean corals. Her work Mongo consists of a broad range of food packaging (below).

    "My art transforms toxic refuse into evocative objects of abstract seduction, that bring a sense of beauty to environmentally devastating situations and arouse cognitive dissonance in viewers. Since 2005, I have made sculptures and drawings which respond to the by products of our society’s rampant consumerism. My aim is for the work to incite both a sense of pleasure and a disturbing awareness of the degradation of our oceans, land and bodies. This engaging visual experience will support change in viewers' behaviors. My involvement with the group, Organizing for Plastic Alternatives, has both channelled some energy towards finding practical solutions to these problems, as well as increased awareness of my own problematic behaviors."

    Plastic production is expected to triple by 2050. By then, our oceans will contain more weight in plastic than fish. In 2018 China refused to accept non-recyclable waste from other countries, and it’s cheaper for manufacturers to make virgin plastic than recycle. In America, we still have eighteen states that have preemptive laws stopping plastic bag regulations. As John Oliver states in his recent special on plastics in March 2021, “the real behavior change needs to come from manufacturers, the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR). They need to create the infrastructure to recycle the products they make.” EPR laws are being proposed now, and it cannot happen soon enough for Toby Zallman.

    Toby Zallman        is a Chicago artist whose art practice focuses on sculpture and drawing. In 2004, after becoming aware of how damaging our plastic and e-waste is to the environment, she changed her materials to both incorporate recycled/re-purposed materials in her sculpture as well as a source of visual inspiration for both the sculptures and drawings. She has used computer detritus, plastic bags, plastic bottles and solid plastic trash to create unique art works that shed light on the environmental devastation cause by our culture of consumerism. Zallman shows both locally and nationally. Zallman has been the recipient of several Illinois Arts Council grants, including one in 2021 for her exhibition “Our Plastic Trash,” and an Individual Artist Program Grant, City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) and a 2022 Puffin Foundation grant for her project, "reefscollape." She has had artist residencies at the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo and Ragdale. Zallman received her BFA from Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia.

    Featured Images (top to bottom): ©Toby Zallman, reefscollapse, 2018-2022, site-responsive installation made with discarded plastic packaging; (sculpture), large format color print on muslin with pastel and plastic (backdrop), approximately 12 x 8 x 6 feet (sculpture) 9 x 18 feet (backdrop); Mollusc 10, 2020, plastic, 2.75 x 1.375 x 2 inches; Mongo, 2021, plastic refuse, 13.5 x 19.5 x 19.5 inches; Water Bottles, 2007, mixed mediums on plastic water bottles, 33 x 51 x 36 inches; Whorl, 2016, acrylic, laser print, graphite, pastel, plastic bags on muslin, 43 x 62 inches; Portrait of the artist (below), by Tom Van Eynde.

  • Monday, September 19, 2022 7:57 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    September 19, 2022

    This week we recognize    Bremner Benedict  Bremner Benedict, and her Hidden Waters Series.

    Benedict’s projects center on the role that landscape plays in the human experience. Her focus is on unrecognized, under-valued yet important elements of the natural world. Her earlier projects, range from the role of landscape in creating memory - Distant Places; to electrical towers interruption of the American Western landscape - Gridlines; to a child’s imaginary play in natural history dioramas - Field Trip, Re-Imagining Eden. Benedict’s recent work, Hidden Waters, combines art and science to envision the impacts of climate change and overuse on endangered arid-land springs in the American West.

    "Since prehistoric times springs have been key to humanity’s survival. Unfortunately arid and semi-arid land springs, ciénegas, and their aquifers in North America are endangered and disappearing at a rate that continues to increase as the water crisis in the West prevails across lands that are the driest they have been in 1,200 years. Being an artist who is passionate about the water crisis in the West, I am drawn to their story as unseen yet essential details whose importance is misunderstood."

    "Living on the Colorado Plateau I was struck by the contrast between spring-fed oases and their parched surroundings. I noticed how a landscape of drought and aquifer overuse can drain color out of the environment. The toned colors of Maynard Dixon’s Western landscape paintings provided my inspiration to use color to imply the vulnerability and precarious future of dryland springs. This series is an intersection of art and ecology where I interpret scientific data visually and viscerally to humanize its complexity, while at the same time addressing a wider view of climate change and its impacts on dryland springs by making them feel accessible and personal in order to encourage their stewardship."

    "Currently there is a lack of public information on the importance of these waters and the need for their protection; conservation is inconsistent at best. Springs continue to hold vital clues to the health and longevity of the underground aquifers we depend on and the loss of these significant ecosystems will continue to threaten our ability to live in dry places. If we want any chance to combat the climate crisis, then the importance of documenting these ecological sites before they are gone, and capitalizing on these opportunities to raise awareness, cannot be understated." 

    Bremner Benedict's     photographs have been featured at Fidelity Art Boston; Center for Photography, Tucson, Arizona; Florida Museum of Photographic Arts; New Mexico Museum of Art; Decordova Museum of Art and Sculpture, Massachusetts; Harvard's Fogg Museum, Boston; and George Eastman Museum, Rochester, New York. Solo exhibitions include Florida Museum of Photographic Arts; Griffin Museum of Photography at Stoneham, Winchester, Massachusetts; Texas Woman’s University, Denton; and Philadelphia Print Center. Her Hidden Waters archive resides at the Museum of Art & Environment, Reno Nevada. Recent awards include Juror’s Award, Karen Haas Juror, Conversations with the Land, Center for Creative Photography, 2021; Massachusetts Cultural Council Finalist, 2021; Juror’s Honorable Mention, 2021; Art and Science 2, A. Smith Gallery, 2021; Critical Mass Top 200, 2019; the FENCE, New England, 2019; Legacy Award, Griffin Museum of Photography; two Puffin Foundation Grants; Museum of Northern Arizona artist residency; and solo exhibitions at Texas Women’s University, and Philadelphia Print Center. Benedict is a member of Blue Earth Alliance. Photographer Mark Klett chose her work Quitobaquito Springs for inclusion in his up-coming book, Wild Visions.

    Featured Images (top to bottom): ©Bremner Benedict,Hidden Water Series; portrait of the artist below.

  • Thursday, September 15, 2022 12:54 PM | ecoartspace (Administrator)

    Fundraiser & Pop-Up Exhibition

    Miriam Sagan’s Poetry Yard, Santa Fe

    Ana MacArthur, Ahni Rocheleau, Chrissie Orr, Frances Whitehead, Toni Gentilli, Hilary Lorenz

    FUNDRAISER EVENT September 30, 4:30-630pm

    POP-UP EXHIBITION October 1 & 2, 11-5pm (free)


    ecoartspace invites you to experience site-works by six ecoartspace artists for our three day pop-up exhibition at member Miriam Sagan's private poetry yard in Santa Fe. We will be serving drinks and appetizers, and there will be seating to listen to the artists talk about their work.

    Suggested donation is $50-$100 per person

    Donations will go toward the printing of two ecoartspace publications; a second edition of our annual exhibition book for 2021, Embodied Forest; and our upcoming 2022, Earthkeepers Handbook.

    RSVP for fundraiser by September 28

    Can't make it? Not in New Mexico, please consider making a donation here

    RSVP for fundraiser by September 28


  • Monday, September 12, 2022 1:18 PM | ecoartspace (Administrator)

    Newton Harrison in 2019. Photo: The Harrison Studio/Various Small Fires.

    ARTFORUM September 07, 2022 at 10:53am

    Newton Harrison (1932–2022)

    Newton Harrison, who with his wife, Helen Mayer Harrison, introduced the ecological art movement that positively affected both neighborhoods and nature around the world, died September 4 at the age of eighty-nine. The news was announced by the Los Angeles–based gallery Various Small Fires, which represented “the Harrisons,” as the couple were known. In a practice that spanned more than five decades and encompassed a broad range of media, the Harrisons collaborated with ecologists, biologists, historians, architects, urban planners, and activists, as well as other artists, to investigate issues of biodiversity and community development, presenting their carefully documented findings within the context of art. The couple’s work shaped government policy and city planning in the US and Europe, and continues to influence a broad network of eco-artists focused on raising awareness of the ongoing negative impacts of militarization, environmental disregard, industrialization, and pollution on the land.

    “Put most simply,” Harrison told the journal Ecopoesis in 2021, “I as an artist am unafraid to offend. I as an artist feel compelled to improvise much the way my other companion species do. I improvise my existence as best I can with the material at hand. The intention,” he concluded, “is to the improve that which is around me.”

    Newton Harrison was born October 20, 1932, in Brooklyn, New York, the grandson (through his mother) of Russian immigrant Simon Farber, a tinsmith and the founder of the kitchenware brand Farberware. Harrison grew up in the nearby suburb of New Rochelle, and by fifteen knew he wanted to be an artist, though his parents urged him to finish his prep-school studies. From 1948 through 1953, Harrison assisted sculptor Michael Lantz, to whom he had introduced himself. From Lantz, whose 1942 Man Controlling Trade greets visitors to the Federal Trade Commission Building in Washington, DC, he learned to sculpt with a variety of materials and to read and draft architectural blueprints, which would themselves become a key facet of his own practice.

    Continue reading on ARTFORUM here

  • Monday, September 12, 2022 12:05 PM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    September 12, 2022

    This week we recognize   Sarah Kanouse   Sarah Kanouse based in Boston,  and her recent works including a solo performance "My Electric Genealogy (above), which will premiere in Los Angeles this month.

    For nearly forty years, Kanouse's grandfather worked for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, designing, planning, and supervising the network of lines connecting the city to its distant sources of electricity. His legacy includes some of the most polluting fossil fuel infrastructure in the country—much of it located out of state, on Indigenous land. As these power plants finally and belatedly come down, the performance asks what is owed to the communities long harmed by this infrastructure? Weaving together signal moments in the city’s history with voices of Diné advocates for just, equitable transition, “My Electric Genealogy” is an essayistic working-through of energy as a personal and collective inheritance at a moment of eco-political reckoning.

    "A People’s Atlas of the Nuclear Colorado (above) is a digital public humanities project that documents and interprets the relational geographies of nuclear materials developed and deployed by the United States. With contributions by scholars, students, and artists, the Atlas offers the public an opportunity to explore, research, and document nuclear materials and ecologies of Colorado. Powered by the Scalar publishing platform, the Atlas is loosely organized around the nuclear fuel cycle, from extraction, milling, and processing to the assembly and deployment of weapons to the storage and monitoring of waste. It challenges, however, conventional models of this process by weaving in its 'shadow side:' environmental contamination, workplace exposures, boom and bust economies, geopolitical instability."

    "Beyond Property (below) is a suite of tools guiding inquiry into the proposition that property is an Anthropocene technology. The collection includes: a book of readings; a suite of cards for embodied exploration; a small sculptural object; and a section of barbed wire removed from an American fenceline decoupaged or “bandaged” with text from the writings from Gerrard Winstanley, the 17th century English activist-philosopher. Rooted in Quakerism, Winstanley’s True Levellers movement enacted a powerful critique of the morality of private property at the moment of its formalization through enclosure. The project began as part of Field Guides to the Anthropocene Drift, published by Field Station 2 with the Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, and the Goethe Institute, Chicago." [Free downloads]

    "Ecologies of Acknowledgement (below) was commissioned by the University Hall Gallery at UMass Boston for the exhibition Local Ecologies, which included a video, letterpress print, and boat tour, focuses on the land use histories of Deer Island in the Boston Harbor. Going beyond mere ‘recognition’ of Native territory, the project asks instead what it means to accept the relationships and responsibilities that come with living on occupied land. In the 17th century, Deer Island was a forced Indian removal and incarceration site, where between 500 and 1,000 people suffered from dire conditions comparable to a concentration camp. It is now the site of Boston’s wastewater treatment plant."

    "The experimental nonfiction film Grassland (below) uses stop-motion animation, live action footage, text fragments, and expressive sound to excavate the stratigraphic layers of belief, ecology, practice, and geology that form a northeastern Colorado landscape. Carved out of decimated ranch lands during the Dust Bowl, the grassland is both a conservation zone and a working landscape. Cattle grazing, nuclear missiles, hydraulic fracturing, and wind power generation co-exist within a few miles of each other. Less explication than essay, the film locates the grassland in historic and geologic time, ranging over changing frameworks of law, ideology, and cosmology, variable and contradictory human practices, and the material and geological forces of the land itself. Meditative original footage of the grassland merges with collage animations created from diagrams, drawings, and found photography to portray the refuge’s subterranean activities, from well drilling to missile storage to soil sedimentation. The resulting nineteen-minute film is a poetic and unsettling portrait of a complex, evolving place."

    Sarah Kanouse is an interdisciplinary artist and critical writer who examines the politics of landscape and space. Migrating between video, photography, and performative forms, her research-based creative projects shift the visual dimension of the landscape to allow hidden stories of environmental and social transformation to emerge. Her creative work has been screened or exhibited at Documenta 13, the Museum of Contemporary Art-Chicago, the Cooper Union, the Clark Art Institute, the Smart Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, and in numerous academic institutions as CUNY Graduate Center, George Mason University, University of California Berkeley, and the University of Wisconsin. She has written about performative and site-based contemporary art practices in the journals: Acme, Leonardo, Parallax, and Art Journal; as well the edited volumes Ecologies, Agents, Terrains, Critical Landscapes, Art Against the Law, and Mapping Environmental Issues in the City. A 2019 Rachel Carson Fellow at Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Sarah Kanouse is Associate Professor of Media Arts in the Department of Art + Design at Northeastern University. She earned her MFA degree in Studio Art from the University of Illinois, and a BA in Art, magna cum laude, from Yale University.

    Featured Images (top to bottom): ©Sarah Kanouse, My Electric Genealogy, 2021-2022; A People's Atlas of the Nuclear Colorado, 2021; Beyond Property, Field Guides to the Anthropocene Drift, 2021; Ecologies of Acknowledgement, traveling exhibition 2019-2021; Grassland, 2019, nonfiction film recently screened at the Mimesis Documentary Film Festival, Boulder, Colorado; portrait of the artist (below).

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software